Britain rejects Pakistan’s request to deport Dar

Says no extradition treaty exists between Pakistan and the UK.

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Staff Report

Islamabad

The United Kingdom has rejected Pakistan plea for deporting former finance minister of Pakistan Ishaq Dar.

The British government while rejecting the plea took the stance that there was room in law on this count but no extradition treaty exists between Pakistan and the UK.  Pakistan should formally contact the government in this connection.

Former minister Ishaq Dar and his wife are living in the UK and were holding diplomatic passports which have been cancelled by foreign ministry. Report in this regard has also been filed in the Supreme Court. Dar is required to appear in person before the court.

According to law, it was binding on Dar and his wife to return the diplomatic passports within 30 days after quitting office. Later they were to be issued general passports. But during this period Dar and his wife stayed in UK and they did not get their passports cancelled.

According to a report Dar was likely to seek political asylum in the UK.

The apex court on Thursday ordered the relevant departments of the government to find a way to bring Dar back, so that he could be produced in court.

The court had already suspended the notification declaring Dar a senator-elect, over his failure to appear before it despite repeated summons.

The directives were issued by a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar during the hearing of a case related to non-appearance of Dar before the apex court.

The chief justice regretted that the court was finding it difficult to summon an absconder.

The secretaries of foreign office and interior as well as the Prosecutor-General (PG) of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) were ordered to inform the court on Tuesday about ways to bring Dar back from the UK.

“Ishaq Dar is an absconder who is roaming freely around in London but never takes the trouble to return to Pakistan to submit himself before the court of law despite repeated directions,” regretted the chief justice.

The court warned it would proceed ex-parte against Dar if he failed to appear before the court the consequences of which would have to be faced by him.

Additional Attorney-General Nayyar Abbas Rizvi told the court that the government was taking steps to bring Dar back home for which contacts had been established with Interpol for the issuance of red warrants. “But the matter is still pending with Interpol,” he said. “Usually it takes two to three months to get a person extradited.”

The court wondered if Dar could still live in the United Kingdom if his passport was cancelled because then he might be deported from the UK.

The AAG said that he might still be able to live in the UK by seeking political asylum on which the court responded, “Let Dar tell the UK authorities that the Pakistani judiciary is doing injustice to him.”

The court asked what measures the new government was taking to bring Dar back and when he would be brought to Pakistan.

The court said that Dar faced no threat in the country.

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